Hundreds of cars were turned away from Formby Beach today as police handed out 20 coronavirus fines.
People were found to have travelled from as far as Leeds, Stockport, and Manchester to visit the beauty spot in Sefton on Sunday, in blatant breaches of current lockdown restrictions.
The streets surrounding the beach were gridlocked and the car park was full this morning, as officers turned over one hundred cars away from the area.
Around 20 people were issued with fines of £200 in the form of fixed penalty notices for breaching Covid restrictions.
Officers from Merseyside Police slammed those "flagrantly flouting the rules" and said people should be following the guidelines "now more than ever", so that we can meet the criteria for easing lockdown restrictions in the months ahead.
Hundreds of people also flocked to Crosby Beach today as the region experienced another day of clear blue skies and sunshine.
Traffic was pictured backing up in the area as crowds gathered for picnics and others sunbathed on the sand.
The current government guidelines state that people should only exercise once per day with those in their support bubble or with one person from outside their household.
People must stay within their local area and follow social distancing guidelines.
The restrictions around meeting others outside are set to change during different stages of the government's roadmap which was laid out earlier this week.
From March 8 people will be allowed to meet with one other person outside for recreation such as sitting on a bench and having a coffee.
Under the next stage of the roadmap, which will be introduced no earlier than March 29, the Rule of Six is expected to return for outdoor gatherings.
This means up to six people – or two households of more than six people – will be allowed to meet up in outdoor spaces like parks and also private gardens.
Find the number of people vaccinated near you by entering your postcode below
Community Policing Superintendent Graeme Robson said: “This weekend, due to the good weather, we have seen a large increase in people travelling to the Formby beach area, some of whom had travelled a significant distance to get there.
“This is totally unacceptable and shows a complete disregard for the government guidance, which is in place to protect not only ourselves but others around us.
"To flagrantly flout the rules in this way is not only reckless and irresponsible, but can result in a substantial fine, as we have seen today.
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“Individuals from as far as Leeds, Manchester and Stockport were found to have made the trip to Formby today, which is quite frankly astounding. Now more than ever people should be taking heed of the advice, so that infection rates can continue to drop, and we can meet the criteria necessary for easing lockdown in the upcoming weeks and months.
“We will continue to work closely with our partners in Sefton, and across the rest of Merseyside, to ensure the safety of our communities, and will take enforcement action where people refuse to follow restrictions. Current guidance states that people must only travel for essential reasons, and you must remain local.
“We will continue to have increased patrols in the area over the upcoming weeks and I would strongly advise people to check ahead before travelling to popular destinations to ensure they can socially distance while there, and to avoid it completely if it’s not within your local area.”